Skype Down – 6 Alternatives to Skype

I don’t know about you, but I rely on Skype for many communication needs. The service’s outage today raises many reliability questions, and although I am sure the staff at Skype are working hard to fix the issues, it’s probably time to list a few alternatives, “just in case.”

To make things clear, I don’t use Skype as a chat client, but to make voice calls. A few alternatives would then include: Jajah, QuteCom, ooVoo, VoipBuster, SightSpeed and Vbuzzer. I am sure there are many other alternatives, and I encourage you to mention them in the comments if you know which they are. In the meanwhile, here is what each of this services does:

Jajah lets you call contacts anywhere in the world, and even save up to 98% on your bill when you use your existing phone. The system works on any phone, including land lines and mobile, and doesn’t require download of additional software. Jajah provide white label and outsourced telephony services in more than 200 countries.

QuteCom, previously known as WengoPhone, provides voice and video over IP. It is an open source project, that requires some programming skill. Ideal for the tech savvy IT users.

ooVoo lets you video chat with up to six family members or friends at once – a service ideal for video conferencing for business purposes as well. There are many affordable plans to choose from, with features like file sharing, audio and video recording, text chat, priority customer service and more.

VoipBuster is a program that uses the latest technology to bring free and high-quality voice communications. With VoipBuster you can call regular phones in various popular destinations for free or call at an incredible low rate to any other phone on the planet. You can also call all your online friends (pc-to-pc calls) as long as you like, for free.

SightSpeed is an award-winning provider of Internet video chat and voice calling for friends and family, and video conferencing solutions for businesses. The service also features video emailing, text chatting and more.

Vbuzzer offers everything from computer to phone calling, faxing and SMS, to web conferencing, video email and more.

Comments

  1. Christi Johnson says

    I think I read two mentions about Voxox, and I have to admit…though they are not yet getting the attention I believe they will, the day is coming where Skype will be left completely in the dust by this company.

    Last week, I was looking for a way to make sure that I never miss calls for any reason. I knew there had to be a service like that out there. I got Google Voice and for about 2 days, I was really excited. Then I started to think. I need to program in every number I have, and when people call whatever number by which they find me, I want them to hear a business or personal message. Actually, I have 2 businesses, and I needed to merge and not have to pay attention to the mobile, Skype, the house and any other number I have. I got work out trying to figure out how to merge everything.

    So…I put my Google Voice number on my site…but I have not yet started to market the 2nd business and the more I thought about it, the more I could see holes in my approach. Thankfully, Skype had a major outage. I read about Voxox.

    Seriously…what they offer is unbelievable. I am nearly ready to totally get rid of Skype for forever and go with Voxox. There is no way that, in time, they will not compete with and demolish Skype. The only way they could fail to “facebook” Skype is if the entire company and all their employees and all their technology exploded simultaneously and irreparably.

    Perks: connection to all social media, one interface for all connections, one “ring” to rule them all…that is all my numbers (lol. Yes, I stole that from somewhere…cannot recall where. Haha!!), and…well, it’s just easy to use. I do not work for Voxox and have no clue if they have affiliates and am not one of those if they do have affiliates.

    I just like what they are doing for communication. Glad to be on the bandwagon early…

  2. Muphen R. Whitney says

    Thanks to Henryhyva and Mr. Butler for the info.

    Henry: I just talked to someone at Telcentris re Voxox. It sounds AMAZING, and it sounds as though it provides everything Skype does for me at less cost. AND it is a US company where you can get your questions answered! (By a person….who knows what he is talking about!) Color me Voxox…it looks like I’m going to be an early adopter!

  3. says

    Even if we shouldn’t rejoice in other people’s problem, Skype’s problem created a record day of downloads for us at Tribair. We had 10 times more downloads than usual.

    We just launched a month ago and are 45% cheaper than Skype.

    We’re providing a “TRIBAIR IN 90 SECONDS” video on our website http://www.tribair.com

    Give us a try!

    Eric

  4. says

    Thank you very much for all your comments. I am sure there are many other alternatives – the aforementioned are the only ones I could find in a short time. I didn’t mention Yahoo!Messenger and Google Talk because I assumed you all know them already.

    For the commenter who said that only ooVoo is a real alternative, Jajah also allows PC to phone calls, from any web browser. VoipBuster allows SMSing from your PC, SightSpeed offers low rate phone calling and works on both PC and Mac. Of all, Vbuzzer is the most complete: computer to phone, computer fax, computer to phone SMS; video, chat, etc. For calls, I just got another suggestion via email: Freephone2phone. I’ll do a follow-up on this with more in-depth details.

  5. David Newman says

    Free tools are very useful for home users, but when you need a conferencing service for business there are cheap options that includes support and 365/24 guarantee.
    Im using TooMeeting Conference flat fee for two years, I like extreme sport, not extreme conferencing.

  6. Muphen R. Whitney says

    I believe the term should be “Your comment is awaiting approval by the moderator”. “Moderation” has an entirely different meaning.

    And how long does the “moderating” process take, anyway? I posted this comment more than 8 hours ago!

    • says

      Murphen, sorry your comment was left sweating in the elevator, our night staff here in Germany was out carrying the 50 foot Christmas tree in from the Black Forrest. You know how these huge news offices can get deserted when the editor sleeps.

      As for the “moderation” versus awaiting someone to judge? I believe the usage is appropriate since someone is “presiding” over the release thereof. You could be strictly correct however? Not my concern. What is concerning for me? Nit picking.

      Always,
      Phil

  7. John says

    I just wasted about an hour and a half trying to get Skype to work. I’ve just moved it over to a Linux machine and though I messed up the installation.

    One problem with all the alternatives is that the people you wish to contact are not using them, they’re on Skype.

  8. LinuxSkypeGuy says

    Out of the six alternatives listed I would only consider ooVoo as a ‘genuine’ alternative as the others either do not support video chat or you have to pay money to use them (please correct me if im wrong though). So there is only ONE alternative to Skype really, however I believe linux users, like myself, cannot use ooVoo, I may be wrong, and Id still swear by Skype in general, I’ve been using it nearly everyday for over 5 years and problems like today are very rare.

  9. says

    I found this website that can be an alternative to the skype monopoly maybe some will be able to use this as they get skype back up

  10. BlueBox says

    You forgot to mention Google Voice. It is free. They give you a free local phone number, free incoming calls,free outbound calls, and free video phone. I have had it for three years now.

  11. Kenny says

    Wow, it sure can ruin your day when you’re used to having non-stop service. Happened to be an important day. Somebody is going to be making a LOT of money off this outage. Just not me.

  12. McDave says

    Google Voice has also had some delays in their SMS delivery recently. Both (I believe) are victims of their success. Internet-based capacity buildout occurs (typically) AFTER there are issues.

    As for Amazon S3, they have 99.999999999% reliability (Eleven “9′s”) so they should not be considered the same animal. (snarky estimate)In 1 million years, they will have 30 seconds of downtime.

  13. Ken Bradshaw says

    I can’t believe Fring was not mentioned here. Fring works on most cell phones including android for video calling and does not require wifi to make a call when 3G or 4G is obviously sufficient. In addition, Fring international rates are cheaper than Skype! 1 cent a minute anywhere in the world!

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